It’s not just big businesses and governments that face cyber threats, small companies can be hard targets as well. Cyberattacks have been reported to be targeted by 22 percent of small businesses, according to research. According to a study conducted by the Better Business Bureau, 11 percent of these occurred during the last 12 months.
Business owners don’t always know how to guard against cyberattacks, but it’s important to do so. The following information will help small businesses deal with cyber-risks.
Risks: What’s At Stake?
Hackers pose a threat to your money, data, and IT equipment. The content of your network could be used by a hacker to do a lot of damage, including:
- The ability to access client lists
- Information about customers’ credit cards
- Information about your company’s bank account
- The pricing structure of your company
- Conceptual designs of products
- Growth plans
- The manufacturing process
Besides putting your company at risk, these attacks are also a danger to your personal information. Hackers might use their access to your network to breach the supply chains of other companies you are linked to.
Attacks: What Is The Impact?
You and your business can suffer a lot of losses from a cyberattack. Approximately 60% of businesses that are compromised by an attack close within six months. The most obvious impact of the attack is the loss of business, but there are some other consequences too, including the following:
- Theft of bank information may result in financial losses
- Business disruptions can cause financial losses
- It costs a lot to clean up a network after a breach
- A compromised customer’s information damages your reputation
Can Your Business Be Protected From Cyberattacks?
Yes, absolutely! Cyberattacks can feel overwhelming for small businesses. Your business can be protected if you take steps. Start by following these steps.
1. Conduct a Risk Assessment
Assess the risks that could hamper the security of your organization’s systems, networks, and data. You can plug any security gaps by identifying and analyzing possible threats.
Assess the storage and access of your data, as part of your risk assessment. Identification of possible sources for data access and the methods they may attempt to access the information. Evaluate the risks involved with possible events and the potential consequences of breaches.
You can refine or develop your security strategy once this analysis is complete and potential threats have been identified. Regularly review and revise the security strategy and whenever information storage and use is significantly modified. Data is better protected this way.
2. Implement an Antivirus Program
Viruses, spyware, ransomware, and phishing scams can be prevented by security software that can protect all of your devices. Software should not only protect your computers but also offer technologies that can help you clean as necessary and restore them to their pre-infected state.
3. Educate Your Employees
Businesses can be attacked by disgruntled employees. Researchers estimate that 43 percent of data loss occurs because employees provide access to your network to cybercriminals “carelessly” or maliciously.
Employee-initiated attacks can occur in many scenarios. A work tablet can be lost or login credentials are given away by an employee. Among them is the use of fraudulent email, which spreads viruses.
Train your employees in cybersecurity to protect against internal threats. If they receive a suspicious email, for example, explain what to do.
4. Stay Up-To-Date With the Software
Maintaining your business’ functionality requires up-to-date antivirus software. It is routine for software updates to be made to make them stronger or patch them to prevent hackers from exploiting coding loopholes.
5. Make Regular Backups
Are your files backed up? Cyberattacks can compromise or delete data. Can your business survive if that happens? Many businesses would not be able to function if they stored all their data on their laptops and cell phones.
Make sure your files are automatically backed up with a software program that does this for you. Your backup files can be restored if there is an attack. Choosing a program that allows you to schedule or automate your backups will prevent you from forgetting to do them. Whenever you make a backup, keep a copy offline so that your backup files do not become inaccessible or encrypted.
Cybersecurity For Small Businesses: Four Reasons
Data breaches, cyberattacks, and other security threats pose a threat to small businesses that do not have proper cybersecurity measures in place. The following four reasons will be considered for implementing smart and sustainable security solutions in small businesses for the long term.
1. An Increase In Demand
Ironically, cyber threats are progressive. Threats that cyber security aims to prevent are becoming more sophisticated as well, as cyber security itself grows more complex. When the protectors and attackers battle, successful attacks often slip through. This shows how cyber security remains a vital aspect of business today.
Choosing a managed security provider to assist in understanding and protecting against these threats will benefit you greatly. Despite growing threats, cybersecurity providers have adjusted their approach with time. Their digital teams always receive the latest advice and software protection from the firms that they work with.
2. Keeping Your Business Safe
Consider some of the small firms that have suffered from inadequate cyber security in recent years if you are wondering how important IT cyber security is for small businesses.
IT support services are specifically designed to protect against hackers and data thieves, avoiding mistakes that can result in data loss and use disruption for companies that have never opted for cyber security protection. These cyber-threats occurred far fewer times for those who had effective IT security measures.
Having a smart cyber security partnership with an organization you can trust will eliminate the stress associated with running a business online in the digital era. This organization will stay on top of your data, look out for cyber threats, and secure your anti-virus software.
Data protection and infrastructure protection are essential for the well-being of every business. Complying with both will keep your business going no matter what.
3. Management as a Smart Decision
People and small businesses often believe that downloading a cyber security package would be sufficient to safeguard their personal computers or their business laptops.
The sheer volume and diversity of threats found in the online world make this approach incapable of properly protecting your business, and to do so, you need a managed approach.
A cyber security agency aims to provide smart, helpful, and reliable services to businesses by offering them cyber security that is smart, helpful, and reliable. Talk to one of their experts on the phone or send them an email to find out how they are managing cyber security in a small business. Or, browse through case studies to see what they have achieved in the past.
Finding the Right Cybersecurity Company
Cybersecurity is something many businesses are not proficient with. There’s nothing wrong with needing help with cybersecurity. Business is your priority after all. But how do you choose a cybersecurity company that best suits your needs? The following features are listed as a checklist for your convenience.
1. Don’t Fall For Cheap Options
The last thing you want is someone who comes in, installs some software, and then goes away. It is impossible for a company that specializes in one field to provide the protection you need, without offering additional products or services.
2. Tests and Reviews Undertaken By Independent Parties
Despite big tech words and an impressive marketing campaign, independent testing and reviews provide valuable insight into cybersecurity companies. A good cybersecurity company will test its product and are more than comfortable sharing its findings.
3. Extra Assistance
You need a company whose support is impeccable, no matter if there is a threat detected or your files need to be backed up. Find a company that can help you navigate through threats, finds solutions, and makes cybersecurity easier for you.
You can feel confident about your business no matter what you are doing, whether you’re selling items online or maintaining a digital ordering system. It’s incredibly important that you partner with an IT services company that can help you prepare for and tackle cyber threats in a digital world because small, local businesses might look like an easy target for hackers looking for a quick win through data acquisitions and phishing.
If your business grows, you need a cybersecurity partner who can expand with you. You should consider companies that offer a complete line of security products, including future modifications you may need. Cybersecurity has always been at the top of the list for small business owners, but now it is also at the top of the small business owners’ checklists. A good cybersecurity company can help mitigate your risks, and there are steps you can take to protect your small business.
Neha Singh is the Founder & CEO of Securium Solutions with a demonstrated history of working in the information technology and services industry. She is skilled in ECSA, Vulnerability Management, Security Information and Event Management (SIEM), Management, and Business Development. She loves traveling and trekking.